Thursday, January 12, 2012
Posted by dkuehn at 11:56 AM
I'm about halfway through.
First - what they refer to as "think tanks" I don't even think of as "think tanks" - I think of them as adovcacy organizations, and that's probably because of my own background with the Urban Institute which is very serious about keeping that distinction.
They talk a lot about the Center for American Progress here, and I should note that Urban's new president is coming from CAP. I can tell you from experience, people at Urban definitely have these things in mind - people there almost universally want the Urban Institute to remain a "think tank" rather than an "advocacy organization". But part of the logic of bringing someone over from CAP is precisely to get our research out there and in peoples' hands. I think that would be a very good thing. Think tanks loose out to advocacy organizations, simply because of the time lag. I think it's certainly possible to cut that time lag without becoming an advocacy organization, and I personally am giving the new president the benefit of the doubt that that's the plan.
I have no idea what I'll be doing in five years, but I put the highest probability on being back in the think tank world. I like it a lot. But I hope you never catch me at one of these more advocacy oriented organizations.